| I | II | III | The 30th of October brought many things to the streets of Rauru - controversy in particular. It had been announced a few weeks prior that Lady Jareth Luvenis selected a suitor who would rule over the fair lands at her side. Many were ecstatic to hear such marvelous news. However, when the consort was introduced to the public - many people had their own convictions on the situation. Vera Bellrose's family had served House Rautio for generations. She came across as witty and charismatic in her many interactions with Jareth Luvenis, eventually earning an elevation in her status shifting from a mere scholar to a Lady of the Raurian Court. Vera was well received by the public, holding a very positive reputation for her compassion toward the community. Surely she would make an excellent partner to Viscountess Jareth. Of course, many found it odd and some even saw it as an act of evil. Regardless of public opinion, however, the event was open for the entire world to see. Each of the Great Houses participating in the Crisis of Kings, whether friend or foe, were invited (much to the dismay of Jareth Luvenis's advisers) to witness the love-filled and joyous union. Wise men say that love leads to bliss, and the 30th of October is only another piece of evidence to support that claim. As wedding guests flooded the courtyard of Rauru's grandest castle, an ominous undertone felt present. Surely everyone in attendance felt the uneasiness, but none cared to mention it. The viscountess walked down the aisle clad in her favorite purple frock coat. She paused at the alter and eagerly awaited the arrival of her bride to be. Vera eventually appeared, slowly making strides toward the priest with her masterfully crafted wedding dress leaving the audience speechless. The consort paused at the appropriate place and the typical wedding readings began. Then came the vows. Vera recited hers loud and proud, telling of promises for love, compassion, nobility, and strength to come. The audience applauded the woman respectfully. When Jareth was asked for hers, she told roughly similar promises to her consort. "Vera, so long as you are at my side I shall swear nothing but loyalty and strength. I shall reign over this fair land beside you with vigilance and courage. Through your brightest days and stormiest nights, through sickness and through health - The priest smiled at the pair of women before him and continued with the ceremony. "May we have the rings please?" he asked aloud. Navea Khouri sauntered forward with the stunning set of wedding rings sitting atop of a purple cushion. She presented them to either woman and took her place once more. "Wonderful!" exclaimed the priest. "Now, before we exchange rings - does anyone object to the marriage of these two individuals?" Lady Jareth looked into her audience with an expression that almost dared them to object. She seemed confident and fearless, her eyes promising sorrow to anyone that spoke up against her union. A typical man would have perhaps thought twice about contending against the marriage based on the look in Madame Luvenis's irises - but, one must remember that an expression is only daunting when you don't think about the technicalities of the situation. Lady Jareth could glare daggers at her people all she wanted, but technically, she was just a fragile woman who could truly do nothing if anyone was to object. Technically, all she'd be able to do is argue and fight to get her way. Technically, the viscous nature in her stare was only an act. And some members of the audience were perfectly aware of that. From a particular corner of those in attendance stood a group of fierce men. They were clad in colors of the Solarian people, and returned that sorrow-promising stare back at Jareth Luvenis. "We object," called out a gruff, unwavering voice from the group of Solarians. "This marriage is against our interest and we perceive that as a threat. You'll have to pay in blood to be forgiven, my dear friends." At that moment, blood began to spill. The members of Great House Solarian unsheathed their weapons and began swinging mercilessly toward anyone within reach. Swiftly, the Raurian guardsmen flooded the courtyard, attempting to protect the rulers of their land as well as apprehending the attackers. It seemed that the Solarian citizens were much more proficient in the art of combat, however. Vera and Jareth clung to one another as the horrendous scene unfolded. The two ladies were quickly plucked away from the terrors by a group of guards. They were lead toward the garden which had an iron gate the guardsmen intended to close right behind them. Though a foul kink in the gate system caused the iron bars to remain in place. The guards frantically attempted to close it before any Solarians noticed. A group of guards lead Vera out of the garden and toward the castle's back exit. Jareth stood frozen in place, watching a group of her men attempt to close the gate. Shayne Seraphin, one of her top men caught a glance of her standing and approached her quickly. "My lady, you must flee from here!" he exclaimed hastily. "Quickly - there's a ship behind the castle...inform the captain to take you to the Insani outpost that's only a few days away. I'm sure our dear ally won't hesitate to take you in until the city is sa-" The guard stopped talking abruptly, and after a moment he fell forward onto the ground. There was a knife planted in his back. A pool of blood began leaking out of his uniform as his body lay motionless on the ground. Standing behind him was a man who was surely apart of the attack who wore a proud expression on his face. "My, my, what a lucky find," the man cooed. "Viscountess Jareth herself. It truly was a beautiful wedding, Madame. It's just a shame your poor decisions had to so blatantly assault our interests. Perhaps if you had thought about your actions, so many lives wouldn't have been lost today." Jareth squinted at the stranger, her brown eyes piercing him with hatred. "You are most despicable!" she cried. "Killing the innocent simply because you had a petty qualm. I hope the public sees your ruthlessness and resists! You're all monsters!" The man chuckled, taking a few strides toward the viscountess, kicking the limp body of Shayne Seraphin out of his way. He peered down at the short woman who stayed glued to her spot. "Rulers shouldn't come so young if you ask me," he stated simply. "You're foolish and naive. You've failed your lands. All these purple banners waving over your territory - should be painted red with your own blood." The man raised a dagger into view of the viscountess. She eyed it for a moment before looking back into the stranger's eyes. "You wouldn't kill a woman in cold blood." "You underestimate my morals." "You underestimate me." With that in the air, Lady Luvenis made a swift motion toward her attacker's abdomen, which sent him to the ground. In his side was a golden-hilted dagger, decorated with roses and gems. He screamed in agony, eventually throwing profanity into the mix when he took note of Lady Luvenis sprinting away toward the castle's exit. Down the hill near the shoreline, the viscountess made out a cargo ship which was surrounded by a group of guards. She darted toward the vessel and discovered her unwedded wife being coaxed on board. Jareth boarded the ship and embraced her lover with tears streaming down her cheeks. It was a rare site to see Madame Luvenis lacking in composure. She was always so stern and confident, the way a ruler needed to be. "Shall we withdraw ourselves again?" asked Vera through a fit of tears. "Rilisk was wrong. There is a famine for blood." Jareth thought for a moment. She wiped trickling tear off her cheek before it could fall. "No," she stated. "We cannot continue to quit in the wake of blood. If this world intends to rip me apart bit by bit, I will not hesitate to retort. I fought for my right to this Viscounty and I promise that I will die for it, too." Jareth stared intensely at her significant other before letting a few unfinished sobs show themselves. The ship began slowly departing from the shore and in the direction of the Insani outpost. Behind them, shrieks of the scorned and a white wedding painted red. The 30th of October brought many things to the streets of Rauru - bloodshed in particular.